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AndyT replied to the topic 'Membership Drive' in the forum. 1 hour 55 minutes ago

Hi Suave_Blues_Man

Thanks for the vote of confidence. I never knew about the old live chat thing, as I came to the old site relatively late, sounds like I missed out a lot. Would be a good thing to do but I guess Skype and other programmes have taken over.

Perhaps we should start promoting the club on other areas, such as Facebook etc. I'll probably do that, but most of my 'friends' aren't harp players. It would be good to get new members, but also encourage new members to keep posting. I try to say hello to new members, but often find it difficult to do so if I have nothing to respond to beyond the initial hello. But will work on that.



AndyT thanked Suave_Blues_Man in topic Membership Drive 2 hours ago
AndyT replied to the topic 'My heart beat affects tone on slow notes?' in the forum. 2 hours 3 minutes ago

Hi Jack

Keep up the esoteric stuff, helps everyone think differently about their playing.

As to the heart thing, I don't have this problem. However, there may be things you can do to improve your lung strength and capacity, which hopefully will address this problem.

For example, whilst we cannot affect our heart rate, we can affect things which affect our heart rate. I.e. If you are walking and your heart rate is high, stop walking and your heart rate should fall. Breathing is one thing which can affect our heart rate - helping slow it down. So doing breathing exercises to strengthen your lungs would have an effect on your heart. Now this is pure guesswork, but it may be that stronger lungs will help prevent the heart affecting your breath in the ways you describe.

Luckily, playing harmonica is a very good way to improve lung capacity. I can out breathe other players in my concert band (I play second trumpet), which I totally believe is due to my harmonica playing and it's focus on inhaling. Band instruments such as trumpets, clarinets etc are all about exhaling, and other players in my band struggle to maintain long notes. I can do it far more easily, lasting up to a minute.

So, hopefully the problem will go away. But I would also advise concentrating on your breath as you play until you notice it does disappear, because, as we know, how we inhale/exhale is asimportant to our playing. But if not then you may need medical help, but others here may be more informed about this sort of thing.

Hope this helps.



jack5 created a new topic ' My heart beat affects tone on slow notes?' in the forum. 5 hours 17 minutes ago

Hi fellow harpists,
I know I write some esoteric posts but they are important to me as a beginer and may help others who struggle with similar issues/questions.
On slow notes my heart beat interrupts a smooth sound. It is quite noticeable. Think kaaaaaaaabmpbmpkaaaaaaaaaabmpbmp etc. Does anyone else have this issue and what can you do about it if anything.



Suave_Blues_Man replied to the topic 'Live near Fond du Lac, Wi.' in the forum. 5 hours 44 minutes ago

Hello HC Member swaters,

Contact Mike's Music @ www.mikesmusic.net/lessons.html

They have a good selection of harps and should be able to put you in touch with other players.

Be Blues...And Jazz,

Suave Blues Man


Suave_Blues_Man created a new topic ' Membership Drive' in the forum. 5 hours 55 minutes ago

Howdy Y'all,

For all of you readers we have quite a history of worldwide response from harmonic players. In its previous evolution there were over ten thousand members! Once upon a time we superseded 135 members on the site simultaneously. Today I see that we have 356 (!) "guests"! A new standard that I sincerely hope continues!

Previously, when we had the HC "Chat room", LIVE lessons were given to players around the world. That's right, Y'all; around the WORLD! Now is the time to register and log in frequently. Have a comment? A suggestion? A question about a technique that just doesn't make sense? What KEY is a tune, and what key of harp is used? We have the resources, we have the talent. AndyT is a great resource. Dexer chimes in often. What happened to Captain Hook from Adelaide or harmonica68 from the Boston area? Conversations appear and/or were heard in: French, German, Russian, Portuguese, Japanese, Hindi and Chinese to name a few. Several MILLION potential members!

But recognition goes only so far with our present incantation. To join, or not to join? I, for one, look forward to a site that wraps it's loving arms around the world once again. Contributors from every land and language. Bass players, chord players, chromatic, tremolo, octave players. Swinging in Paris or evenings in Moscow. A video from a farmhouse in Romania or a simple church piece from Louisiana. Duets? Trios? Some Bluegrass from Kentucky or solid Jazz interpretation.

C'mon one and all. You'll be glad you did!

Be Blues...And Jazz,

Suave Blues Man


SWAPAN DEB replied to the topic 'Hi....new member in the CLUB' in the forum. 11 hours 51 minutes ago

Hi Andy,

Again advised like a good teacher. keep it up. Aks, follow Andy. To some extent this is helpful to me also.


gunsmoke added a video. 12 hours 18 minutes ago

- feeling cool

Morning Blues


SWAPAN DEB Nice...Really i am feeling cool my friend. Keep it up. 11 hours 45 minutes ago
Dexer replied to the topic 'Hi....new member in the CLUB' in the forum. 13 hours 35 minutes ago

Eric33 wrote:

...especially with the words as well. Providing that you sing the words in your head as you are playing you will be very pleased...

Funny thing: I was trying to play a song called "Bottle of Wine" by Jimmy Gilmer and the Fireballs. It was tabbed by a well-known and respected harmonica player but he totally messed up the words. Whenever I tried to play it, I screwed it up because I kept reading his goofy lyrics while I was internally singing the actual lyrics as I knew them :). I finally gave up. He has since edited his tab.



Eric33 replied to the topic 'Hi....new member in the CLUB' in the forum. 14 hours 13 minutes ago

Hello newcomer,
The information that Andy T has given you is very helpful and really good of him to put a tune down in tab form,especially with the words as well. Providing that you sing the words in your head as you are playing you will be very pleased with the outcome a and you will pick it up very quickly. Another tune which doesn't have any sharps or flats is Pop Goes the Weasel and Raindrops keep falling on mY head.You can also play these tunes on a Hohner Little Lady harmonica which has 4holes or 8 notes,but you need to be able to tongue block.It will not break the bank either.Keep puffing Eric33


AndyT replied to the topic 'Hi....new member in the CLUB' in the forum. 14 hours 45 minutes ago


If you are time limited, I'd suggest the simple tunes, but ideally both. You say you're concentrating on holding technique, which is easy; it should be whatever you are comfortable with that enables you to get a decent tone, amplification and to move around quickly - though speed should not be your concern at the moment.

Do not be afraid to push the harmonica as far into your mouth as possible. Check out some videos by JP Allen on YouTube on this, he has some very good ones for beginners. The more in your mouth the harp is the better your tone. Tone is the go to thing for all musicians and something you should always aim for. Pushing in may sound counterintuitive if you choose to lip purse/block at first, and it takes a lot of practise, but persevere, it took me a week to got a single note with this method, but it pays off later. It's natural if you tongue block. I started out lip blocking no then learnt tongue blocking. Your lone term gol should be to learn both, but that's long term. Pick whichever one you feel most comfortable with, and which you can use to get a good, well toned, single note.

A good way to practise simple tunes, octaves and scales at the same time is to learn tunes that work across all three. My go to tune for this is somewhere over the rainbow; which I've tabbed below.

(Using the following tablature: '-' for draw and unmarked for blow. '-*' for bending but no bending required for this one. Ignore the full stops, it's the damn autocorrect on my IPad!)


Somewhere over the rainbow
4 7 -7 6 -6. -7. 7

Way up high
4. -6 6

There's a land that I heard of
4. -6. 6. 5. -5. 6. -6

Once in a lullaby
-4. -3. 4. -4 5 4


Someday I'll wish upon a star
6. 5. 6. 5. 6. 5. 6. 5

And wake up where the clouds are far behind me.
6. -5. 6. -5 6. -5. 6. -5. 6. -6. -7

Where troubles melt like lemon drops
6. 5. 6. 5. 6. 5. 6. 5

Away above the chimney tops
6. -5. 6. -5. 6. -5. 6. -5

That's where you'll find me.
6. -5. 6. -6. 7


(Tabbing is okay to get the holes, but listen to the song as often as possible to get duration of notes and all the other things required. This is why I love YouTube.)

To sustain your zeal and avoid faltering it's best to play tunes you like, or play around with sounds you like. If you don't enjoy it you may be tempted by the dark side (giving up).

And practise in short bursts, rather than long ones. It's like body building, you need to train your muscles, so little and often is best. I'd advise to aim for at least 20 minutes a day for a while. If you want to do more, just do two 20 minute bursts a day, with a decent break between, possible even morning then evening. Or three if you want. You'll soon notice improvements. If you want to do more, then listen to music. That's something we all have to do, listen to all types of music, and all instruments.

Then up to 30 minutes a day. Gradually building up to a length you want. Even doing 20 minutes a day is enough if you haven't much time. Then the bug should get you and before you know it, you'll be laying for hours. It's okay to start with even shorter practises, but generally 20 minutes is the lowest threshold for muscle and lung development.

Sorry this is so long, hope it's not too much (I'm jet lagged and am trying to tire myself out enough to get some sleep).

Good luck


aks replied to the topic 'Hi....new member in the CLUB' in the forum. 15 hours 23 minutes ago

Thanks Andy,
Should I try some simple numbers first or octave first?
Yes...Practice is the rule, I hope I could sustain the zeal and don't get faltered away at this age :)


aks replied to the topic 'Hi....new member in the CLUB' in the forum. 15 hours 29 minutes ago

Thanks Swapan...
I appreciate the acknowledgement. Its diatonic 10 holes (Hohner). I am starting with the holding technique and the octave.


aks thanked SWAPAN DEB in topic Hi....new member in the CLUB 15 hours 33 minutes ago
AndyT replied to the topic 'Hi....new member in the CLUB' in the forum. 19 hours ago

Hi Aks

As Swapan says, pick a familiar tune or two to begin.

Then practise, practise. For more drtailed help ask questions on any issue you come across. Also check out other questions on posts.



JamesA replied to the topic '‘’ Members Harmonica Articles Category’’' in the forum. 21 hours 8 minutes ago

That's a marvelous idea Skiathitis. Although I'm not sure we will find any authors. If members are interested I will look at developing a Members articles area.


SWAPAN DEB replied to the topic 'Hi....new member in the CLUB' in the forum. yesterday

Hi Aks,
Welcome to HC. Hope, your new harp is a ten hole diatonic. In this situation try the most common easy birthday song "Happy birthday to you...."


richardkeith replied to the topic 'Greetings!' in the forum. yesterday

Thank you! Well, I guess "Dylan-style" is where most people start, though I certainly am not there yet.


Marcy replied to the topic 'Greetings!' in the forum. yesterday

I definitely hear some Bob Dylan in your style. Cool videos, and really nice website.


richardkeith replied to the topic 'Greetings!' in the forum. yesterday

Thank you Marcy...I am sort of a folk/rock kind of guy. If you like, check out some of my music at www.richardkeith.net, also available on iTunes, Amazon MP3 etc.